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Stocks rise, shrugging off weak home-sale numbers

Sue Ogrocki/AP

Contracts to buy previously-owned homes fell in January, according to the National Association of Realtors, calling into question the sustainability of a recent increase in existing home sales. Markets, however, are largely ignoring the data, accepting instead the NAR's explanation that it is low inventory, rather than low demand, putting a lid on the number of existing homes to be sold. Homebuilder stocks were up 1.43% Monday morning, while the broader market rose slightly.

Why it matters: Investors continue to look on the bright side of whatever new information is given. This attitude could launch the Dow Jones to a 12th-straight record-high today, if it can set records today and tomorrow it will tie a 1987 high for longest string of record closes.